Acosta back in the swing of things
The Arizona gymnastics team welcomed a former Wildcat back into the program this offseason as an assistant coach. Randi Acosta, then known as Randi Liljenquist, roamed the hallways of McKale Center from 1999-2002.
Acosta was brought back after former assistant Colleen Johnson decided to pursue other opportunities in the off-season. While at the UA, Acosta was a four-time All Pacific 10 Conference gymnast and a two-time All-American.
""She's doing well,"" said head coach Bill Ryden. ""I think she is very happy to be back in her old stomping grounds. She bleeds red and blue, so that's really nice for the girls to see, but she is doing great.""
Acosta is in charge of the beam team and also choreographs both the beam and floor routines. Acosta excelled in both events during her time in the desert, even earning two perfect 10.0 marks during a floor exercise and one for a beam routine. Acosta is also a part of the marketing and promotions for the team.
""She is intensely a perfectionist, which she also was as a gymnast,"" Ryden said. ""It's an advantage for the girls (to have Acosta) because we have such a strong alumni following and it's a living breathing example staring at them.""
Before she came back to the UA, Acosta coached at Desert Devils as an optional level beam coach and also choreographed floor routines.
""I think it helps me coach them,"" Acosta said. ""They understand that I have been there and done that and I am very passionate about that feeling that you get when you hit a perfect a set. It's just the best feeling that you can ever feel.""
The Wildcats immediately embraced Acosta and the new life she breathed into the program. After every beam routine, each gymnast immediately seeks out Acosta to be congratulated.
""She has just been great,"" said Deanna Graham. ""We all really love the way she coaches. She is a perfectionist, and that really helps us and our routines. She is just amazing.""